Monday Mantras

Monday Mantra: necessity is the mother of invention

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For 13 years I resisted Proctor & Gambles fierce advertising campaign to purchase a Swiffer, but was inspired to head to Target to get me one a after listening to an NPR interview about fostering creativity in the workplace. In it author Jonah Leher talks about the 1999 development that revolutionized cleaning. The story behind Swiffer’s invention tipped me over the edge; it was love at first (use.)  The wand is light; the rectangular head swivels seamlessly, and the white synthetic cloths glide easily and silently over floors picking up the smallest dust particles and crumbs. The third, and last time, I resupplied I guiltily purchased a jumbo sized package of pads. Pretty sure the pads are synthetic and not good for Mother Earth.

Several months ago Leann gave me 2 microfiber cleaning cloths. Several weeks ago I used my very last Swiffer pad. Since I work best when the kitchen is a clean “canvas”, necessity is the mother of invention, and my eco-conscience was using a megaphone , I cut up one of the microfiber cloths into Swiffer-sized rectangles, tucked a piece onto the head of the wand and swept through the kitchen with 90% of the ease (the fabric is a little more difficult to remove and requires washing) 95% of the efficacy, and 110% of the moral satisfaction that comes from knowing I’m not adding another Swiffer pad to the landfills of the future.  Not one.

Have a Swiffer wand? Cut your own pads; sew or knit your own; make them for friends and family.  Proctor & Gamble won’t be happy, but perhaps they’ll give their design team an assignment that will be a tonic for Mother Earth. And you’ll be happy!

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4 thoughts on “Monday Mantra: necessity is the mother of invention

  1. I, too have never bought a swiffer for that very reason. BUT, I did end up buying the O’Ceder ProMop because you can fill it with any cleaner you want (I use vinegar) and you can wash are re-use the microfiber mop head. It’s great…

  2. Love it! It’s definitely more convenient using the pads (I only used the two samples that the swifter came with), but I can’t bing myself to keep adding to the landfills either. Thank you for sharing!

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